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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Danny Cipriani

Wasps fight back after half-time to beat Exeter Chiefs 25-20 on the opening weekend of the Premiership season.

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The bag of money and drugs and Otto the police dog

A bag found stuffed with cash and drugs following a crash is discovered by a police dog, it emerges.

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An airship in the searchlights

Duncan Leatherdale

BBC News online

One hundred years ago, William Leefe Robinson became the first person to shoot down a German airship over the UK. The revolutionary bullets he used helped end the airship threat - but also led to people on the home front facing an even greater danger.

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Our live coverage across the day

That's all for regular updates here from the BBC Beds, Bucks and Herts team until 08:00 on Monday, unless a major story breaks.

Today, we covered a new play to celebrate the history of Bedford and the flame is being lit in Buckinghamshire ahead of next week's Paralympic Games in Rio with events being held at Stoke Mandeville Stadium to recognise its role at the birthplace of the movement for sport for people with disabilities.

Have a good weekend.

Overnight weather: Cloudy and mainly dry

Alex Dolan

BBC Look East weather

This evening and overnight it'll be rather cloudy, but mainly dry, although there's a chance of occasional showers.

Lows of 12C (54F).

Saturday's weather map
BBC

Saturday will start bright and dry, but it'll turn cloudy later, with heavier rain in the evening and overnight. Top temperature: 20C (68F).

BBC Weather has the full forecast where you live.

Lewis Hamilton fastest in Italian Grand Prix practice

Andrew Benson

Chief F1 writer at Monza

Stevenage's Lewis Hamilton set the pace ahead of Brackley-based Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg with an impressive performance in second practice at the Italian Grand Prix.

The world champion was 0.193 seconds quicker than Rosberg around Monza as the two head into the final stages of their title battle.

Lewis Hamilton
EPA

Hamilton is nine points clear of Rosberg with eight races remaining.

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel was third but nearly half a second down on a track where margins are always tight.

Bedford's secret BBC Orchestra

Nic Rigby

BBC News

We've been following the story of the play Somewhere in England (The Bedford Play) to celebrate Bedford's history at the Quarry Theatre (pictured below).

Quarry Theatre, Bedford
Google

Mark Burgess, writer and director, said: "The title reflects the fact that the BBC Orchestra was based in Bedford during World War Two, broadcasting from Bedford venues (including the Corn Exchange and Bedford School's Great Hall).

"The [location of broadcasts] had to remain a secret to avoid [Bedford] being bombed by Hitler's Luftwaffe and so the broadcasts were always announced as being live from somewhere in England." 

Play celebrates Bedford's history

Nic Rigby

BBC News

A play has been written to celebrate Bedford - a place probably named after a Saxon chief called Beda who settled near a fordable part of the River Great Ouse. That was 13 centuries ago and a lot has happened since then...

Did you know, for example, that the BBC Orchestra was stationed in Bedford during the World War Two, but the location was kept secret?

Swan Hotel
Google

The play Somewhere in England (The Bedford Play), at the Quarry Theatre in the town was commissioned by The Harpur Trust as part of its 450th anniversary celebrations. 

It uncovers the lives of key Bedfordians, famous people connected to the town (such as Glen Miller and Nelson Mandela) and the stories behind some of the town's landmarks, including the Cardington Hangers, The Bedford Swan Hotel (pictured above) and Bedford's iconic bridges.

Trust in charge of Bedfordshire's mental health service rated ‘outstanding’ by watchdog CQC

Bedfordshire on Sunday

The trust which provides mental health services in Bedfordshire has been rated outstanding by the healthcare watchdog.

Jonas Mikalcius, Will Evans, Nathan Hughes, Joe Marchant

World U20 Championship winners, a Lithuanian powerhouse and a newly qualified Englishman - who are the new faces to look out for this season?

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Motorcyclist injured in Royston crash

Nic Rigby

BBC News

A motorcyclist is in a critical condition in hospital after being involved in a crash on the A505 in Royston last night.

Baldock Road, Royston
Google

His bike was in collision with a brown Honda CR-V on Baldock Road just before the derelict Horse & Groom pub at 10:15.

He suffered serious leg injuries and was airlifted to hospital.

Surveying equipment near bypass stolen

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Police are appealing for witnesses after surveying equipment worth thousands of pounds was stolen in Luton at about 12:45 on Wednesday.

HT0150
Bedfordshire Police

The Total Station, with ID number HTO150 is worth £15,000, and was taken by a man in Sundon Road near where the new bypass is being built.

He left in a white Citroen Berlingo van.

Bedfordshire Police wants to hear from anyone who witnessed the theft or has had the equipment offered to them.

Libraries will not close, says Bedford council after review

Nic Rigby

BBC News

Bedford Borough Council has announced it will not be closing any of the town's libraries.

Putnoe Library in Bedfordshire
Google

It follows a period of public consultation in which 4,500 people took part.

One idea to save money was to have fewer libraries, but the council says public opposition means that's no longer an option.

Wotton Underwood landscape upgraded by Historic England

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

To mark Lancelot "Capability" Brown’s 300th year, Historic England has upgraded some of his landscapes including that at Wotton Underwood in Buckinghamshire.

Wotton Underwood landscape
Historic England

It has been upgraded to Grade I on the the National Heritage List for England to celebrate it as an outstanding example of an 18th Century country house landscape.

Home to the separately listed Grade I house, the grounds are full of man-made picturesque details including a large lake, islands, bridges, a rotunda, pavilion and grotto.  

Historic England said its understanding of this "important" landscape had increased following recent research and analysis by The Gardens Trust.

The landscape was shaped by a number of high-profile designers of the day, including Capability Brown.

Police money and drugs bag tweet hailed 'best ever'

Helen Burchell

BBC News

Earlier we told you how police were hoping the owner of a bag stuffed with money and drugs would come to collect it from their lost property office and have a nice "chat" about it.

The tweet, posted by officers from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire road policing unit, has been described as the "best ever" by some of their social media followers.

It included a photograph of the dark-coloured bag, full to the brim with £10 and £20 notes and plastic bags of drugs and 

Numerous people have commented, one writing: "Wait, if I come and collect it, you won't arrest me right?" and another saying, "Can you leave it where you found it please. I'll come and collect it later this evening".

Lost bag
BCH Road Policing
Arkadiusz Jozwik

Police investigating a man's murder are granted an extension for a special dispersal zone around the crime scene.

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Police seek owner of money and drugs

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Sometimes the direct approach is a good thing - and there's not really a more direct approach than that employed by the Beds, Cambs and Herts Road Police in the early hours of this morning when they found some "lost property".

So, if you've mislaid your stash of money and drugs, do feel free to contact the police as they would "love to chat".

View more on twitter

Great Fire of London used in safety warning

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue doesn't miss an opportunity to remind people about fire safety  - it's used the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London to warn about dangers in the kitchen.

The fire raged across the city from 2 to 5 September 1666, destroying more than 13,000 houses and 87 churches.

Real flames were used for cooking in those days and it's thought it started in a shop belonging to the king's baker, Thomas Farynor, in Pudding Lane, early in the morning.

Hobs are a lot safer these days, but the fire service says it's still not safe to leave cooking unattended.

View more on twitter

Strictly Come Dancing's Greg says 'any dancer would be great for me'

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

So, for Strictly fans, the wait is nearly over - on Saturday night all will be revealed as the public finds out which celebrity has been paired with which professional dancer.

Zoe Ball and Greg Rutherford
BBC

Olympic long jumper Greg Rutherford from Woburn Sands has admitted he doesn't mind who he gets, although Natalie Lowe or Karen Clifton would be good in terms of height.

Speaking to Zoe Ball before the recording of the launch show this week he said: "I can't dance, they're all incredible dancers so anyone will be great for me.

"I'm not a wonderful dancer, so I'm hoping that things can build up and pick up slightly." 

You can find out who he is paired with on Saturday at 18:50 on BBC One and you can meet all the celebrities in an exclusive look at the class of 2016 on the iPlayer.

Hamilton second fastest in Italian Grand Prix practice

BBC Sport

Stevenage's Lewis Hamilton was second fastest in first practice for Sunday's Italian Grand Prix in Monza this morning, behind team-mate and championship rival Nico Rosberg.

Lewis Hamilton
Getty Images

Hamilton, who leads the drivers championship by nine points with the Brackley-based Mercedes team, has been paying tribute to Felipe Massa, who is to retire from F1 at the end of the season.

"I wish him all the best and [am] super grateful that I got to race with a great driver like him," he said. 

You can read reports from the practice session on BBC Sport.

The Paralympics at Stoke Mandeville: Pictures from the archive

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Inspired by the lighting of the Paralympic flame in Buckinghamshire today, I've been delving into the archives and found some pictures of the Games and its forerunner, the Stoke Mandeville Games, from the 1950s and 1970s.

We're not sure exactly what was happening here, but don't try it at home:  

Paralympic Games
Getty Images
In 1955, 200 competitors took part in the grounds of the National Spinal Injuries Centre at Stoke Mandeville
Paralympic Games
Getty Images
Ornelis Moriel of Belgium in the discus at the International Paraplegic Games in July 1970
Paralympic Games
Getty Images
USA v Netherlands basketball at Stoke Mandeville in July 1955
Montage

With the Premiership flush with cash foreign stars have flocked to England - BBC Sport picks out the biggest overseas arrivals on show this season.

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Stoke Mandeville events celebrate birthplace of Paralympics

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Events are being held at Stoke Mandeville Stadium all day to recognise the birthplace of the Paralympic movement, ahead of the lighting of the Paralympic flame there later.

Stoke Mandeville Stadium has tweeted that "everyone is welcome... to try loads of paralympic sport". 

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Stoke Mandeville and the birth of the Paralympics

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

As Rio prepares to host the Paralympics, we look at the role Stoke Mandeville played in the birth of a sports movement for the disabled.

  • On 29 July 1948, 16 paralysed ex-serviceman gathered on the lawn of Stoke Mandeville Hospital to take part in the first ever Stoke Mandeville Games
  • They were held to coincide with the opening of the Olympic Games in London
  • The games were the idea of Dr Ludwig Guttmann, a neurologist, who had fled Nazi Germany to Britain and set up Stoke Mandeville's Spinal Injuries Unit in 1944
  • He passionately believed his patients, with the right help and support, could lead fulfilling lives
  • The hospital continued to host the Stoke Mandeville Games every year during the last week of July
  • As the event grew in popularity, more and more competitors from all over Europe became involved
  • In 1960, the year of the Rome Olympics, Dr Guttmann travelled to the Italian capital with 400 wheelchair athletes from several countries
  • Although officially known as the 9th Annual International Stoke Mandeville Games, the competition we have come to know as the Paralympics was born that year

Paraplegia is not the end of the way. It is the beginning of a new life

Dr Ludwig GuttmannNeurologist

Jail death family make second call for review

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

The family of an inmate who killed himself at Woodhill Prison in Milton Keynes have again demanded an investigation into the running of the prison following another death there.

Woodhill Prison
South Beds News Agency

Thomas Morris, who was serving a ten-month prison sentence for shoplifting was found hanged in his cell in June, despite the family warning the management he was mentally-ill.  

Following his death, Thomas Morris's family told the MK Citizen the jail had "blood on its hands" after the deaths of 14 inmates in the last three years, but they have again called for a review following a death of another male inmate last Thursday.

Peter Clarke, HM Inspector of Prisons, said the Inspectorate could not say when its next inspection of HMP Woodhill will be as the majority of inspections are unannounced, but it does "take account of tragedies such as this in deciding when to undertake our next inspection of any prison".

Paralympic flame to be lit in Buckinghamshire

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

The Paralympic flame will be lit in Buckinghamshire today, ahead of next week's Paralympic Games in Rio.

Paralympic flame
Getty Images

After the ceremony, a virtual flame will leave Stoke Mandeville Stadium and lead a carnival procession through Vale Park in Aylesbury. 

The flame will then be combined with others travelling to Rio from across Brazil.  

It will be lit by Paralympic legend Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson who spent most of her childhood at Stoke Mandeville Hospital and said it's important it's recognised for its role in the Paralympics movement..

Today's weather: Mostly cloudy

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC Look East weather

After yesterday's sunshine, today is due to be mostly cloudy with outbreaks of rain and a maximum temperature of 19C (66F).

Get the regional forecast from BBC Weather.

Welcome back to live updates for Beds, Herts and Bucks

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Good morning and welcome back to Local Live for Beds, Herts and Bucks where we'll bring you news, sport, weather and travel, including details of the lighting of the Paralympic flame in Buckinghamshire later today.

Shortly, we'll see what today has in store with a full weather forecast.

KIngs Langley
BBC
Saracens celebrate Premiership title

Rob Stevens

BBC Sport

The Premiership rugby union season begins on Friday, with Saracens looking to win the title for a third consecutive year.

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That's all folks

That's all from the live team for today.

We'll be back with all the latest news, sport, weather and travel for Beds, Herts and Bucks from 08:00 tomorrow.

In the meantime, any breaking news will appear on this page. 

If you'd like to get in touch, you can email us, contact us via Facebook or send us a tweet.

Weather: Sunshine this evening but rain by tomorrow

Alex Dolan

BBC Look East weather

It will turn cloudier later, with some showery rain across the north of the region and a low of 12C (53F).

weather
BBC

Tomorrow it'll be rather cloudy with the chance of some showery rain, possibly turning heavy at times.

There will be a high temperature of 21C (70F).

More details on the BBC Weather website.

Parked cars involved in crash in High Wycombe

This is the scene of a collision involving a car and four parked vehicles in High Wycombe.

View more on twitter

A man and a woman are in the care of paramedics following the incident.

Emergency services were called to the scene near Tesco Express in Hatters Lane at about 16:30.

Organ transplants: Ethnic minorities urged to discuss donations

The NHS is seeking to encourage more families from black and Asian communities to allow organs to be donated when relatives die

Six in 10 people agree to donate their organs across the country, but it's less than four in 10 in minority ethnic communities. 

Prof Gurch Randhawa
BBC

Prof Gurch Randhawa (pictured), from the University of Bedfordshire, says some communities don't trust the NHS "because of historic issues around racism... but also fears that people may be incorrectly pronounced dead when they may not be".

"What we find is that unless these issues are tackled head on in the community and these conversations are led by the community, we're not going to see progress on this issue," he said.

Cheshunt School deficit means no more council funding

Paul Scoins

BBC Three Counties Radio political reporter

A secondary school in Hertfordshire has been told it can no longer be funded by the local council after running up a significant budget deficit. 

Cheshunt School also has just a fraction of the pupils it needs to fill its classrooms, but says it's in "positive" discussions about its future. 

Cheshunt School
Google

The school has been in trouble before - just five years ago it was in special measures - but this announcement by Herts County Council raises a question over its future. 

It is projected to run at a deficit of more than £500,000 a year, which the council says is "unsustainable".

But the school says closure is not likely and the council has written to parents to consult on its future, which could see it form part of a multi-academy trust or other educational partnership.

CCTV released after Kempston knife-point carjacking

CCTV footage has been issued of a man police want to speak to in relation to a knife-point carjacking in Kempston at the weekend.

CCTV image of a man
Bedfordshire Police

The robbery happened on Spring Road at about 12:40 on Saturday morning, after the victims had parked their car near the College Street junction.

Two men threatened the victims with knives before driving off in a silver Vauxhall Astra.

Police said the pictured man "may have information which can assist our inquiries".

Public praised for helping woman who fell from horse

Jane Killick

BBC Three Counties Radio

Members of the public are being praised by police after they helped find a woman who had fallen from her horse on the Ashridge Estate near Berkhamsted. 

College Road in Berkhamsted
Google

A woman who was out walking on bank holiday Monday called police when she found a white horse wearing a saddle, wandering alone in College Road in Berkhamsted. 

Police also received a call from a man who said his wife, in her 50s, had phoned him to say she'd fallen from her horse and was disorientated.

Officers and members of the public then carried out the search and were able to find the woman and call an ambulance. 

Her injuries were not serious and she was discharged from hospital on the same day.

Dog walker rescued from River Ouse

A dog walker has been rescued from the River Great Ouse in Stony Stratford this afternoon.

The woman was rescued by firefighters just after midday in Toombs Meadow. She was assessed by paramedics.

Bucks Fire and Rescue Service tweeted a water safety message:

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